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Poster: nwgj Date: Nov 21, 2013 7:47am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Why do so many people have a beef with Donna?

Absolutely pro-Donna. Personally I've never felt that an off-key 3-4 second scream is capable of negating everything good about an otherwise amazing 25 minute Playing jam or a rippin' GSET or whatever else people accuse her of "ruining." And no, I don't like Sunrise or From the Heart of Me either. Donna was a fine backup singer with the Dead, and backup singers aren't supposed to stand out. They're supposed to support the lead vocalists, and imho her voice blended exceptionally well with Jerry's and Bob's and her harmonies fit those songs like a glove. Yes, she hit her fair share of raw notes, and yes, her vocals suffered like everyone else's during the Wall of Sound era -- I can rationalize it all I want, but I still admit that sometimes she can sound pretty bad in 74. But I don't let it bother me any more than I let Phil's off-key vocals or any of the hundred other idiosyncrasies about the Dead get under my skin. Of course she wasn't as integral to "the sound" as Jerry or Phil or Bob, but I think she brought far more to the music than she took away from it. And that's not even getting to how sweet she sounded with the Garcia Band.

It seems like plenty of heads say they pass on listening to the 80's or 90's because they don't like the sound of Brent's or Vince's voice or keyboards. How many heads really avoid 1972-1978 because of Donna?